Monday morning saw the spot gold price fall to more than a two-week low, sliding 0.6% to $1,272/oz. Silver prices similarly lost 0.8% to trade around $16.86/oz. The story was the same with the Platinum Group Metals, as platinum lost $7 to hit $914/oz and palladium shed $10 (-1%) to $954/oz.
Wall St opened slightly above unchanged as investors eagerly awaited quarterly earnings from some of the biggest U.S. companies this week. Stocks were sharply higher in Tokyo overnight, gaining 1.1% to extend their longest winning streak ever. The rally was in response to Prime Minister Abe securing reelection, and helped push the Nikkei to its highest level in over 20 years. Most European indices were in positive territory.
The 10-year Treasury yield fell slightly to 2.37%. Meanwhile, the USD was 0.3% higher on the DXY index, registering a three-and-½-month high at 94.0. The surge for equities in Japan was accompanied by the yen falling to its lowest level since July, just shy of ¥114 per dollar.
The euro slipped to a two-week low just above $1.17 on the ongoing dispute between Spain and the semi-autonomous Catalonia region. It also seems that a pair of regions in Italy, Lombardy and Veneto, have taken a cue from the Catalans and are pushing for their own autonomous status from the Italian state. The lack of progress in Brexit negotiations also weighed on the euro and pound sterling as economists try to make sense of how a fragmented Europe could adversely impact the global economy. These movements also represent an opposing vision to the more integrated Europe that German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron are attempting to forge.
Elsewhere in Europe, the ECB will be meeting this week on Thursday. It won’t be the only central bank that’s active this week, with other announcements on interest rates expected in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, and Russia as well.
Friday will see the release of the initial estimates for first-quarter GDP in the U.S., which is currently projected to be around 2.5%. Investors and traders are also watching to see who President Trump nominates as the next Fed chair. On top of that, everyone is eager to see what details emerge from the rapidly developing tax reform plan in Congress.
WTI crude was approaching $52/bbl on Monday morning as OPEC members continued to comply with the production cuts the oil cartel agreed to late last year.
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